When Brad Pitt left Jennifer Aniston, Angelina Jolie already had the upper hand over her rival. However, a book claims that the “Tomb Raider” star did not rest on her laurels just yet but launched a “mean-spirited but effective campaign” to smear the “Friends” star.

In his 2009 book “Brangelina: The Untold Story,” Ian Harperlin wrote that Jolie was determined to silence the “man stealer” talks about her after Pitt left Aniston. To do this, Jolie reportedly had her team release negative stories about Aniston to the press.

“Jolie and her camp planted press stories in 2005 that painted Aniston in a negative light,” Harperlin wrote in his book. “Specifically? That Aniston firmly prioritised her career over starting a family which put her directly at odds with Pitt, who ached for kids,” he added.

According to the author, Jolie targeted the story to those who also bought the man-stealer talk about her. “She was convinced that this is the story that would resonate with all these women who saw her as a man-stealer,” Harperlin said.

Of course Aniston did not take this one sitting down, and she defended herself against the unflattering story. “A man divorcing would never be accused of choosing career over children,” Aniston told Vanity Fair. “That really p***ed me off. I’ve never in my life said I didn’t want to have children. I did and I do and I will!”

Aniston even revealed that she always wanted to have kids of her own and would never give that dream up over her career. “The women that inspire me are the ones who have careers and children; why would I want to limit myself?” the actress said on the same interview. “I’ve always wanted to have children, and I would never give up that experience for a career. I want to have it all.”

A mutual friend of both Jennifer Aniston and Brad Pitt spoke about why the couple did not have children. “Having a baby was not his priority... ever,” the friend said. “It was an abstract desire for him, whereas for Jen it was much more immediate.”

Jennifer Aniston jennifer_aniston-photo shahanaj27/Flickr